Obama Administration ends effective program for catching illegals and terrorists.

October 27, 2011

The Obama administration has issued new orders to border patrol agents that now make it even more difficult to catch illegal aliens and terrorists. 

The Department of Homeland Security's Border Patrol in Washington, D.C. has ordered Border Patrol sectors nationwide to end all routine checks of transportation hubs and systems located away from the southwest border of the United States. From now on transportation checks may only be conducted if intelligence identifies a specific threat. This order prevents agents from using what had long been an effective tool for catching illegals and terrorists.

A press release by the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers states: “For nearly 60 years Border Patrol Agents have routinely observed passengers at bus stations, airports, and train depots in towns near the border. When their practiced eyes and minds develop suspicions of alienage, agents may question an individual or group. This practice, authorized by the Immigration and Nationality Act and confirmed by court decisions, results in the arrests of thousands of illegal aliens a year across the nation. Many of them are violent criminals or smugglers of drugs or humans. NAFBPO is appalled by this new, next step in the degradation of the Border Patrol's ability to secure the border.”(3)

A statement released by the National Border Patrol Council declared, Border Patrol agents have been extremely effective in arresting illegal immigrants, drug smugglers, and those violating a myriad of laws by conducting transportation checks. Millions of illegal aliens are currently residing in the United States and they are utilizing transportation systems to travel throughout the country. This change in policy would give criminals a free pass to exploit these transit systems.(2) “Border Patrol managers are increasing the layers of bureaucracy and making it as difficult as possible for Border Patrol agents to conduct their core duties.  The only risks being managed by this move are too many apprehensions, negative media attention and complaints generated by immigrant rights groups.”(2)

According to the Associated Press  “The Border Patrol informed officials at the Bellingham airport on Thursday that from now on they would only be allowed to come to the airport "if there's an action that needs their assistance," said airport manager Daniel Zenk. "I'm shocked," Zenk said. "We welcome the security presence the Border Patrol provides."(1)
“The situation is similar in upstate New York, where an agent told the AP - also on the condition of anonymity - that a senior manager relayed the new directive during a morning roll call last month. Since then, instead of checking buses or trains, agents have spent shifts sitting in their vehicles gazing out at Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, where few illegal immigrants cross. "They're already bored," the agent said. "You grab the paper every day and you go do the crossword."(1)

In the Buffalo sector, where there were more than 2,400 arrests in fiscal 2010, as many as half were from routine transportation checks, the agent estimated.(1) By adding unnecessary bureaucratic red tape, it will be next to impossible to get an operation in those areas approved. Apprehensions of illegals outside the southwest US will decline dramatically.  Border patrol agents made 7,431 arrests last year along the northern border. The Department of Homeland Security needs to live up to its name and rescind this dangerous change.

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